Scholarship Program | Guatemala

New Leaders Step Up

Unbound scholars are building bright futures for themselves and their communities

Expanding access to education reduces global poverty. But the expense of higher education, the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lack of distance learning technology, and the alarming reality that education for girls is moving backwards in some countries all mean that some students worldwide have fewer options and support to continue their educations.

Luisa, a 26-year-old student in Guatemala, faced a difficult decision when her mother asked if she would continue her schooling. Although Luisa always wanted to be a teacher, her family had limited financial resources. When her classes moved online in the pandemic, she traveled to a local internet café to continue participating, but classes often started before the café opened. She wondered if she would have to abandon her dream.

That’s when a staff member from the Unbound Guatemala team stepped in and suggested she apply to participate in the Unbound Scholarship Program. The assistance Luisa received allowed her to continue following her dream.

But the scholarship program didn’t just change Luisa’s life. It has given her the opportunity to help change the lives of others in her community. Scholars in the program in Guatemala must maintain good grades, serve as positive role models and tutor younger sponsored students.

Speaking about the need for the scholarship program, Unbound Guatemala program coordinator Francisco Chavajay said, “There are many young people who are waiting for an opportunity and who can achieve their dreams as people.”

And when asked about the impact of the scholarship program, he said, “We are seeing the birth of new leaders.”